The 18th Habanos Festival was held in and around Havana from February 29 to March 4th. It is the most prestigious international event dedicated to premium hand rolled cigars.
Hosting 1,200 attendees from more than 60 countries, this year’s festival was dedicated to the most exclusive brand in Habanos S.A.’s portfolio, Cohiba, in honor of its 50th anniversary.
The Hoyo de Monterrey brand also had a significant presence during the festival, with the presentation of Reserva Cosecha 2012. The Cuaba brand, celebrating its 20th anniversary, launched an exclusive special edition for La Casa del Habano, and the H. Upmann brand introduced a significant addition to its regular line.
The Habanos Festival is the largest annual international event celebrating the Habano culture. Attendees enjoyed live performances by Cuban pianist and composer, Chucho Valdes; the Spanish flamenco singer, Estrella Morente; and the Uruguayan singer-songwriter Jorge Drexler.
This year the traditional humidor auction reached €865,000 in proceeds. The funds will be donated to the Cuban Public Health System. This edition has been especially unique thanks to the auction of the first humidor (01/50) of the exclusive special series “Cohiba 50 Aniversario”, which alone raised €320,000 .
Juan Jesus Machín (Cuba) won the “Maestro de Maestros” XV International Habanosommelier Contest. Luis Manuel García Urrea (United Arab Emirates) and Pedro Tejeda (Cuba) were runners-up in 2nd and 3rd places, respectively.
Valerio Cornale received the 20th Edition of the Habanos Award in the Communication category. Dominique Gyselinck was awarded in the category of Business, and Manuel Tuero was the winner in the Production category.
A new Cuban rum launched at the Habano Festival. “Tribute 2016”, produced by the Havana Club International SA, is aimed at the international premium market and is part of a series of limited editions rums that will be sold at each festival. Producion is limited to 2,500 numbered bottles.
Asabel Morales, a Havana Club rum expert, explained that Tribute 2016 is 40 percent alcohol and contains the fine aged rums blended with other spirits to give it an aromatic, intense taste with a hint of tropical nuts and dark amber.
Habanos S.A. has 27 brands, all produced by hand, distributed in more than 150 countries.
Cover image from Habanos S.A.